The Role Of Digital Twinning In Industry 4.0
Industry 4.0 is now a core value of the manufacturing industry. It stands for the increased integration of virtual and physical worlds with data seamlessly flowing between the two.
People and software alike can monitor and analyse information within a single virtual environment, making predictions, drawing conclusions and making decisions. The entire mentality of Industry 4.0 can be summed by the advent of digital twinning.
What Is Digital Twinning?
At its simplest, digital twinning is when an identical virtual model is made of a real-life product, process or environment. This virtual model is constantly being updated and refreshed with data drawn from sensors built within the real-life object or process. Using a cloud-based system, this information is regularly transmitted to the virtual environment where the digital twin is automatically altered to reflect it. Extra data from other sources can also be added to this digital environment to provide a more detailed, fuller picture.
But what can be done with all this data? The possibilities are endless. The enormous processing power and storage capabilities of modern computers enables them to constantly monitor and analyse the information and begin to draw conclusions about system performance. Improvements in artificial intelligence mean that the digital model can predict and inform you of any potential errors, and suggest viable solutions. Detecting problems at any early stage limits the extent of any further damage and subsequently, the financial cost of repairs.
A constantly evolving digital model that accurately reflects its real-world twin is a major asset to any company. Crucially, it provides greater flexibility and opportunity for innovation. Ideas can be tested, refined and discounted without the need for any actual physical manufacturing and associated time and costs. Engineers can either isolate individual elements or run simulations on the entire model.
Insights drawn from this data can not only inform repairs and maintenance on the twinned physical model, but can also influence future design choices for other products and processes. The result is a rapid return on your investment.
The Benefits Of Visionary Render 2
Virtalis’ Visionary Render 2 is the ideal tool for creating, revising and analysing a digital twin. It allows users to visualise their data in multiple dimensions on any hardware platform, whether it’s a tablet, a screen, a VR headset or in augmented reality. They can quite literally step into a real-time model of their product, process or environment and view it from every conceivable angle.
Visionary Render 2 is more than capable of processing and visualising both structured and unstructured data. Structured data is highly organised and clearly defined, such as a CAD model. It is generally tree-like in structure and a computer can easily search through and organise the contents. Unstructured data is less clearly defined and so more difficult to process. Examples would include weather updates, satellite imagery, scanned PDFs and more. Such data is incredibly valuable but previously, software has struggled to extract it. Visionary Render 2 has changed that.
In terms of efficiencies, Visionary Render is best summed up by the number 3.
- In 3 minutes, you can simply drag and drop your data from an external source
- In 3 hours, you can add greater detail to the model and begin to introduce real-time updates
- In 3 days, you can have an incredibly complex model which is constantly evolving in line with real-world information
Teamwork lies at the heart of Visionary Render 2. Your digital model can be accessed by any team member globally, whether they’re in the office or out in the field. Individuals can enter the same immersive environment and make changes in real-time, wherever they are in the world. Teams can have detailed discussions based on the data in front of their eyes, before making decisions right there and then. This can vastly improve the efficiency of your workflow as well as encouraging greater collaboration.
To conclude, digital twinning will be fundamental to the advance of Industry 4.0. The practice of developing a digital twin of real-world products or processes is expected to become commonplace within the manufacturing sector and Visionary Render 2 is the perfect visualisation tool. With superb user experience and ease of collaboration, it leads to smarter decision making.